Toyota Official Says Recall May Not Fully Solve Safety Problem
[Via – NY Times]
In the first of many Congressional hearings into Toyota’s extensive recalls, a senior company executive told the House Energy and Commerce Committee on Tuesday that the repairs prescribed by the company might “not totally” solve the problem of unintended sudden acceleration in its vehicles.
Since last fall, Toyota has recalled more than eight million cars worldwide, including six million in the United States, for complaints that the accelerator pedals can become stuck.
This month, dealers began repairing the pedals on cars involved in one of two recalls, using a remedy that James E. Lentz III, the president of Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A., previously said the company was certain would resolve the issue.
But in response to a question Tuesday by the House energy committee chairman, Henry A. Waxman, Mr. Lentz said that Toyota was still examining the sudden acceleration problem, including the possibility that the electronics system might be at fault — something the company had previously denied was the case.
While Toyota has found no evidence of an electronics problem at this point, Mr. Lentz said, “we continue to look for potential causes.”
“We need to be vigilant and continue to investigate all the complaints of the consumers,” Mr. Lentz said. There is the possibility “of mechanical, human or some other type of error.”
Mr. Lentz also told the committee that Toyota was installing a new brake system that can override a surging gas pedal on almost all its new vehicles and most of those already on the road.